Oregon Just Made it Super Easy to Get Birth Control!

2016 is ushering in lots of new and amazing things, like some serious student loan forgiveness and some bomb new beauty trends.

But for women in Oregon, 2016 brought some of the best news ever! As of January 1st, new legislation now allows women to get birth control without needing a doctor’s prescription.

In July, the House voted to pass a bill that allows women over the age of 18 to get hormonal birth control (patch or pill) with the approval of a pharmacist. According to the bill if a woman is under 18, they would need to have “evidence of a previous prescription.”

Oregon is officially the first state to increase birth control accessibility like this, and rumor has it California is next in line to try it, with Colorado and Washington right behind it.

READ: Birth Control for Men Could Happen in 2017!

Women’s health advocates like Mara Gandal-Powers from National Women’s Law Center have been praising Oregon for being on the forefront of an issue, telling Fusion, “The ability to access birth control when you need it is critically important.”

The new law is great but it doesn’t come without it’s problems. Particularly the fact that pharmacists in Oregon can still refuse to personally prescribe birth control based on their own religious grounds.

Legislation doesn’t make birth control over the counter but there are some people who fear the new level of accessibility means women will not make a habit of seeing their gynecologists for regular visits.

READ: Catholic Doctor Refused to Give Woman Birth Control!

But other factors, like another law passed allowing women to get a years supply of birth control in one trip, are positives surrounding all these new measures.

Executive Director of Planned Parenthood Advocates of Oregon, Mary Nolan, told Los Angeles Times, “We know that allowing women to get a yearlong prescription improves its effectiveness… if you can imagine a woman who lives 30 or 40 minutes away from a pharmacy, having to make two separate trips could be a burden on her.”

2016 is already shaping up to be a great year for women, and we’re only a week in! Let’s hope the east coast starts to take some notes on birth control access too!

Ariel Leconte

Ariel Leconte

Ariel is the Associate Editor of Jawbreaker and creator of Revolutionary In Pink Pumps blog. She is equally obsessed with social justice, lipstick, culture, and red wine.